Brown bolts home by huge margin in Pakuranga

Simeon Brown, with wife Rebecca and baby Anna, celebrates his re-election as the MP for Pakuranga with friends, volunteers, and supporters on Saturday night. Times photo Wayne Martin

Pakuranga MP Simeon Brown helped to keep east Auckland blue by easily winning re-election to Parliament at this year’s general election.

The 29-year-old celebrated his second successive victory in the electorate on Saturday night with wife Rebecca and daughter Anna along with friends and supporters at Daisy Chang restaurant in Howick.

With the preliminary votes counted as of Monday morning, Brown earned 18,977 candidate votes, beating out runner-up and Labour Party candidate Nerissa Henry, who received 9221.

Brown’s majority of 9756 is the largest of any National Party candidate in the country.

He told the Times on election night that he’s “incredibly grateful” for the support he received in Pakuranga and to be re-elected as its MP.

“It’s a huge honour serving this community and I want to thank everyone who voted for me and everyone who voted.

“It’s so great to see people taking part in our democracy.”

Brown says the party result for National across the county is “disappointing and surprising”, but it’s been a “very tough time and a tough campaign”.

“We had the Covid-19 lockdown and we had a difficult time with the National Party but I think we have done everything we can and voters had to make their minds up and make that decision. We accept that.”

Brown puts the party’s poor result down to several factors, including the pandemic.

“I think Covid-19 has changed everything and the Prime Minister had a huge amount of coverage on the airwaves which has been unprecedented,” he says.

“We had the second lockdown during the middle of the campaign which put people in a different mindset that has, I think, coloured the campaign.

“At the end of the day we have a job to do and that is represent the people who voted for us and the values of the National Party and we will continue to do that and hold this Government to account.”

Brown says he appreciates the efforts of his campaign volunteers.

“I’m incredibly grateful for everyone who’s been out there supporting me, knocking on doors, putting up signs, waving signs, delivering flyers and scrutineering.

“I’m hugely grateful for all their support. I couldn’t have done it without them.”

He says National Party leader Judith Collins did a “fantastic job” during the campaign and he supports her staying as leader.

“She took on the leadership at a very difficult and challenging time and she’s done everything she can.

“I’m very grateful for what she’s done, giving the National Party and our supporters and voters a very clear choice.

“She’s worked tirelessly during that time. You can’t fault what she’s done.”

Brown entered Parliament at the 2017 general election.

He’s the National Party’s spokesman for Corrections, Tertiary Education, and Youth, and associate spokesman for Education and Drug Reform.